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Introducing females when one is biting?

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Introducing females when one is biting? Empty Introducing females when one is biting?

Post by adventuretortoise Sun 03 Oct 2021, 2:42 am

Sorry to not post this in the mouse behaviour section, but the forum seems to be locked? So I have to post here for now.

I started with a small group of girls, and unfortunately all but one have passed. It was due to poor breeding, they were my first pets and I made the mistake of thinking the pet shop would have a good breeder. I took a few months before my second last girl passed (approximately two-three weeks ago) and looked for a new proper breeder to sell fancy mice. Everywhere is closed due to Covid, and I could only find one woman willing to sell a pair of girls to me, but she couldn't do so until late October. Knowing that my girl would be stressed alone, and not wanting to let her be by herself for a month (or potentially longer), I adopted one last mouse from the pet shop. I know in any other circumstance I wouldn't have, but I was out of options and struggling to find advice, and I didn't want to risk her passing away from stress of losing her sister. I have an excellent vet who can take care of health issues and such, so I'm all covered on that, and I am prepared for her probable health issues.

The trouble is that they just can't get along. Or rather, my older girl won't get along with the new one. I have tried neutral environments, swapping bedding to share scents, introducing each other through the cage bars, distractions, etc. At first I thought my older girl was happy to see the mouse because she would run around the outside of the cage (whilst the new girl was inside, fully enclosed) and poke her head in every chance she got. She would spend more time trying to reach inside than enjoying the jungle gym I set up for them. So far I have tried twice to introduce them face to face. The first time my older girl actually bit her and drew blood, I immediately separated and gave them a lot of space. I tended the bleeding (thankfully only a small nip) and gave the new girl lots of TLC. I gave it a few days, again sharing bedding, introducing through cage bars, etc and tried again. The second time (today) she again tried to get very close, bullied her, lots of squeaking from both mice, and tried to go for another bite. I thankfully placed my hand between them and took the bite on the younger girls behalf, then once again separated and put back in their separate enclosures. I'm just disappointed because I can tell being alone stresses my older girl out, but she is turning into a nasty alpha.

I'm still new to a lot of this, but this has been my idea so far: Continue to try and introduce through the bars each evening during playtime. Get the two new girls and introduce them to the younger girl first so she has company. Then try to collectively introduce the older mouse to the three younger ones. If it's one vs three, she'll be more distracted and hopefully won't focus any one particular girl. Plus she may get along with one of them better, and then slowly come around to the others.

What do you think of this plan? I'm open to any suggestions, I just don't want my older girl to get frustrated and have to be alone, I'm doing my best and I've tried reading up as much as I can about this. I just want some reassurance. Thank you in advance.

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Post by Sweettreats Tue 05 Oct 2021, 5:14 am

Hey, I had this problem so I just cleaned absolutely everything, including the tank and all fresh bedding and it’s supposed to reset everything. My girls are absolutely fine now:) good luck

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Post by Dee67 Tue 05 Oct 2021, 11:09 pm

I also heard an absolutely clean, neutral cage, with no smells is a must.

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